Thursday, July 19, 2012

Dr. Evermor's Scrap Metal Park

Wisconsin is home to some pretty eccentric destinations. If you’re looking for an unusual road trip, I suggest driving one hour north of Madison to visit Dr. Evermor’s Scrap Metal Park. MTC took a daytrip up to Dr. Evermor’s park to have a look around. Here’s what we uncovered...

When you enter the park, there’s definitely a hoarder-ish vibe that radiates from the random chunks of scrap metal that litter the entrance. However, as you walk down the gravel path and venture deeper into the park, everything begins to change. Rust-covered sculptures jut out of the ground and many of the creations are so huge that they easily dwarf park patrons. If the world of Roald Dahl had a love child with steampunk, the result would be Dr. Evermor’s park. Get a load of the gigantic, gear-riddled, armored insect in the photo below. It’s one of the first sculptures you see after getting past the whopping brush pile.

On our visit we met Dr. Evermor’s wife, Lady Eleanor Every. According to her, the Doctor (aka: Tom Every) started out as an industrial wrecker. She said that he found beauty in the architecture and metalwork of those warehouses and factories he was tearing down. He wanted to preserve those pieces, so he found a way to transport the metal to his shop in Wisconsin. Here, he began making interesting and imaginative sculptures. One of his most famous sculptures is the Forevertron.

The Forevertron also happens to be the largest scrap metal sculpture in the world at 50 feet tall, 120 feet wide, and weighing in at 300 tons! It also incorporates parts from the Apollo Space Mission in its base. 

Dr. Evermor’s artistic genius lies in his ability to take the chaos of demolition wrecking and give it order and beauty through his artwork. Many of his sculptures also incorporate musical components, like this 12-foot tall chiming bird sculpture.

Dr. Evermor’s Scrap Metal Park is located in North Freedom, Wisconsin and admission is free to the public! It takes about 30-60 minutes to view all of Dr. Evermor’s sculptures. If you’d like to do some exploring in the Baraboo area after visiting the park, I would recommend a couple of great destinations that are located within five miles of Dr. E’s.

The first must-see location is Devil’s Lake State Park

Nestled between 500-foot bluffs, Devil’s Lake offers a beautiful sand beach, several hiking trails, rock climbing routes, and campgrounds. After traipsing around the sculptures for an hour in the scorching Wisconsin summer heat, we cooled off by spending the afternoon swimming in Devil’s Lake.

If you find yourself working up an appetite while in the area, do yourself a favor and head on over to The Barn in Baraboo, WI. 

Just a short drive from Dr. Evermor’s and Devil’s Lake, The Barn is an old farm building that was transformed into a restaurant. The bar here features over 200 beers from Wisconsin and around the world. We sampled some unusual beers on our visit including a spicy chili beer that came with a chili pepper inside the bottle, a banana beer that tasted just like a slice of banana bread, and a couple of full-bodied Belgian brews. The food at The Barn didn’t disappoint either. Their pretzel melt (which is like a variation on the classic patty melt, served on a soft pretzel bun) was one of our group’s favorites.
Between Dr. Evermor’s Scrap Metal Park, the beautiful landscape and recreation at Devil’s Lake State Park, and the potent potables served at The Barn, a summer day trip is certainly in order!


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